Written by Janae Babineaux, proud AmeriCorps member serving on the Albemarle Foundation team at Merrydale Elementary School
Choosing to dedicate a year of your life to serve with City Year is an incredible commitment, one that will undoubtedly hold its fair share of challenges and obstacles. But your journey with City Year will be an unforgettable one. City Year Baton Rouge is currently composed of 64 corps members from all over the nation. Young adults, who stand alone as strong individuals and agents of change, but who collectively create a powerful team.
Those who choose to serve come from many different backgrounds and are driven and influenced by different experiences and people. Today, we’re spotlighting two individuals who have already made the decision to embark on the wonderful adventure that is City Year and who will be serving right here in this eclectic southern state.
Rosalie Cole, 19, from Virginia Beach, Virginia
Rosalie Cole is currently taking classes at Tidewater Community College where she studies Elementary Education. She hopes in the future to transfer to either to the University of Arkansas or Louisiana State University. While browsing through different volunteer opportunities, she stumbled upon City Year and immediately knew that it was a great fit because of her passion for education and the issues that surround it. She hopes that as a corps member she can have a positive impact on the lives of her students and the community she serves. She also hopes that City Year can give her a new outlook on life and guide her in her journey to becoming a teacher. She applied to serve where most needed, but was so excited to learn that she had been placed in Baton Rouge because the Louisiana culture is “insanely cool.” Plus, it doesn’t hurt being near LSU!
Jordan Corp, 23, from Chicago, Illinois
Jordan Corp attended the University of Illinois at Chicago where he earned both his Bachelor and Master’s degree in Accountancy. One of his greatest experiences in life was spending a semester in Cape Town, South Africa. During those five months, he underwent a personal transformation that ultimately led him to prioritizing a year of service over the start of his career as an accountant. He believes that service is a perfectly cyclical relationship between giving and receiving. Throughout what he considers to be his greatest service achievements to date, he has walked away with greater communication skills, patience, and understanding of his surroundings.
The three individuals that most influenced his decision to join City Year include his parents and best friend. His father recently transitioned from his role as accountant and CFO of a regional logistics company to head of finance for a large non-profit that serves the youth of Metropolitan Chicago. His mother is an early childhood special education teacher and among other things, has inspired his current involvement with a local special recreation facility. And his best friend was someone he met while studying in Cape Town who eventually moved to Chicago for a City Year experience of his own! All of these things have added to who he is becoming as a person and a contributing member of society. He hopes to improve upon these attributes while inevitably adding to the list of qualities that will better prepare him to contribute in the future.
Jordan chose to “serve where most needed,” and while he knew that any of the 26 locations were a possibility, he could not be more excited to be moving to Baton Rouge. Most importantly, he is happy to be of direct service to the education system and hopes to contribute in any way possible to advocating peace throughout. He has dreams of returning to Africa and giving back to the place where he developed so much as an individual and was sincerely inspired to help others. He has also considered serving with the Peace Corps, teaching, consulting for non-profit organizations, and personal financial advising.